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The Valley Reporter
P.O. Box 119
Waitsfield, VT 05673

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To The Editor:

I've been observing a trend of businesses that are migrating their sites to proprietary platforms such as Squarespace and Wix. Although those platforms may be easy to use, they are not an open source as WordPress, Joomla, Drupal and other popular content management systems are. If you want to move off a proprietary platform, you must start over on a new system. Open source platforms allow exporting and importing a site. Typically when moving a site (with or without new development), page URLs will change and redirects are overlooked, sacrificing years of optimization and URL indexing. A particular challenge of moving an existing site to a proprietary platform is that you're not allowed to set up an htaccess file to redirect your existing pages.

I will also comment on being neighbors and buying local. While watching the Super Bowl, I observed a Squarespace ad, www.squarespace.com/press/2014/1/28/squarespace-super-bowl-2014-ad-released-in-full. Given that their hosting fees are comparable to mine and those of Green Mountain Access, instead of supporting your neighbors, you would be supporting a company that can afford a multi-million-dollar Super Bowl ad, contributing to the increasing inequality between the rich and the rest of us. WordPress, for example, is a widely used platform created and supported by people like me—independent contractors and software developers, not corporations. With what are we to buy your products without your business?

I'll offer a gentle reminder that website development is a profession distinct from graphic arts and any other line of business you may be in. Even for the technically inclined business owner, consultation with a professional website developer can keep you on a good path to success and help to avoid pitfalls.

Darlene McCormick
Waitsfield/North Fayston


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